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These Are a Few of My Favorite Things: Holiday Traditions

What are your favorite holiday traditions?

For today's post, I'm not really talking about a traditional Christmas Dinner or eight days of candles and gifts. Those are certainly cherished moments, but are there traditions that mark the season just for your family and friends? Crafts? Movies? A silly decoration?

Today, I'm sharing the experiences that make the entire season memorable year after year; the unique events and milestones that we all look forward to and miss when they are over. For us, some of these are lifelong traditions and some began just in the last few seasons. Thankfully, most of them will not be affected by the current pandemic, and may be just the distraction we need.

Sunday Night Family Movie - We especially like the newer Illumination Grinch, lesser known short The Magic Hockey Skates and the classic National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation (we fast-forward through a few select scenes when watching with the kids!). And let's not overlook a favorite from the 90's that still resonates--Home Alone!

Christmas Vacation Tree - Speaking of Christmas Vacation, we put up a small themed tree with the official ornaments released from Hallmark each year. The movie brings back special memories from my husband's childhood, so this started as a gift to him. Now, the kids love pressing the buttons to replay favorite lines from the movie.

SNL Holiday Skits - After the kids go to bed, we love watching the holiday Saturday Night Live specials. We've already enjoyed the Thanksgiving episode, and can't wait for the Christmas/Hannukah special!

Community Lights - We have several favorite destinations with wonderful light displays. These are often ticketed events, which support the business or charitable mission. This year, due to the increase in COVID-19 cases, we purchased a ticket for one of the driving light tours.

Gingerbread Houses - This is a tradition that started long before our families did! Our third college roommate and I made annual gingerbread houses from scratch, and then donated them to a local fundraising auction. Samantha tolerated the giant mess in the kitchen from our creations, and some great memories were made! A favorite design was the March Family's house from Little Women. We've since streamlined this annual activity by purchasing kits, but still make a mess and some great memories!

Iced Cookies - Confession: I have a slight obsession with cookie decorating videos. This obsession becomes reality twice per year (December and February) when the kids and I take over the kitchen and make several dozen iced sugar cookies. Stay tuned later this week for pictures and recipes!

Die Hard - No debate here--Die Hard brings back some solid holiday memories for me. My Dad introduced me to the hero John McClane, so I'll definitely be spending an evening on the couch with some popcorn watching the action in Nakatomi Plaza.

Whatever your magical holiday milestones may be, enjoy them this year! And if you're looking for a new tradition, grab some carry-out from a favorite family-owned restaurant and spend the evening in with Kevin McCallister or Buddy the Elf. Cheers!

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